Wednesday, December 28

page 1 of 365

     Alright so I literally have 9 different drafts open with posts/thoughts that I've been trying to put together, but this one won for right now:) I want to write a bit about our Christmas in the next blog, but for this one I really really have to start with another bit of gratitude for you guys. Over the last couple of years I've tried to say thank you in so many different ways, and each expression of thanks doesn't do justice to my feelings. No words can manage that. It's indescribable. But I'll keep trying. So Thank You!!!!
     Thank you, thank you so so much for all the love since my last post. Holy moly. I just shook my head in disbelief in the days after, and every day since as more and more of you shared tender thoughts and bits of motivation and encouragement in the comments as well on my Instagram and facebook pages. And the emails and private messages too that have been coming in more and more, just full of incredibly inspiring stories and messages of hope and healing, understanding and faith. I just love you guys so much, and feel such a kinship! We're all on the same journey, we all want the same things, we all have our own demons. We're not alone. Not ever. I want you to know that even though I have more people than myself on my team lately, I still read every single sweet comment here on the blog and on my social media platforms, even though I may not be able to respond individually to each one. They each mean so much to me, and often touch my heart and soul in surprising ways.

     The day that I need to shut off the comments (as some have suggested) is the day I end this blog, because the connection with you guys through our interactions is the driving force behind The Freckled Fox, and always has been. Being able to see a face and to read even a few words from you guys really helps in bringing you to life. And that especially goes for those of you who have seen me in person! Those great hugs and few moments(or sometimes half hours:)) of visiting are so so special to me.

     All that being said, you beauties and your big hearts have given me the confidence/kick in the butt I needed to push the go button on some really exciting things for 2017, and I can't wait to progress forward next year. Opportunities that I never imagined I or my family would have to learn and help and grow and meet and create and explore are opening up, and I just close my eyes and smile with the deep warmth I feel in my heart. I love the idea of January 1st being the blank first page in our new story, all of us, and here we sit, pen in hand (or paint brush or whatever you want *wink*) with 365 more pages to fill.

     Some of those pages might be incredibly beautiful, maybe with the cries of a newborn baby or simply the breathtaking view from somewhere high in the clouds. Some of those pages might be terribly dark and lonely, full of heartbreak and fear, hunger and suffering. Some of those pages will be written for us, but most of them will be filled by us personally. No matter what I do most of my pages will inevitably be filled with stories of dirty diapers, teetering stacks of dishes, missing shoes, tickle piles, and saying "Eat your dinner." over and over. haha But the rest of the space is for me to fill, and I'm going to try and make the story as beautiful and simple and messy as I can.

What do you hope your 2017 will look like?


  1. Hi Emily!
    A short time ago I discovered your blog, you in your post said to own a team, could detail a little more for me!
    I will look forward to reading your texts in 2017!

    1. Fabiana, thank you so much for reading! I look forward to starting the new year and seeing all that is in store. I can't recall mentioning what you said about the team, so if you wouldn't mind clarifying further I will for sure be able to help you out.

      Happy Holidays!

    2. Hi again Emily!
      Really you did not say anything about having a team, I translated the wrong text. Sorry.
      Even so, I'm curious to know how you can manage your home so well with young children. I have two children only and I am always tired and disorganized. You are an inspiration!

  2. Dear Emily,

    what feels like years ago I started to follow your blog. Simply for hair-inspiration - long haired red-heads have to stick together ;-). Soon though I discovered taht I love your warm and creative writing style. Later I was left speechless (unlike you) with the journey you and your family went through.

    Today, you were warming my heart again. With simple words you show that life is not only good, that there are and will be dark days. But this is actually what makes us who we are and who we’ll be.

    I simply want to say „Thank you“ for always being there for us. For giving us hope, for giving us inspiration. You truly are a sunshine that makes a great day even greater and one that lights up even the darkest days. Thank you!
    I wish instead of writing I could just hug you – it says so much more. So instead, hug your children and tickle them afterwards fort hat lovely squeking sound ;.-) and hug your husband.



  3. Love to you mama!! I'm so blessed to be able to watch your journey and see how God continues to grow you and mold you more into His image. Your children and husband are blessed to have you as their mama and wife. Hugs and lots of kisses sent via the internet! Lol xoxo

    1. Wow Jaimie your comment was so sweet to read, and I feel so blessed to have you following along. It is amazing the difference in perspective that the last year has given me of life and love and god, and I'm glad that I'm able to share my view from the trenches as it were, even though I'm still learning so much.

      I hope you and yours had a wonderful Christmas, and blessings for a Happy New Year!
      - Emily

  4. Dear sweet Emily,
    Your story and your openness, and mostly the way that it has prompted me to think differently about life, to remain grateful through what I might have seen as disappointments or the "boring stuff" before... Your beautiful soul and the way that writing is a somewhat permanent extension of us that can continue to minister to others even when we're sleeping... has encouraged me to set aside the time and put in the effort to continue collecting and publishing my stories. I'm also reminded at how important interaction is, and how that is really the #1 purpose for a blog. Be blessed in 2017!

  5. I found your blog through reading others' blogs. Hoping you don't stop blogging. Although, I could certainly understand why you would. The demands of a family your size are great. I wish you the best in 2017. We all need some 'best'. :)

  6. How far along are you??? I thought you were wearing a lot of loose fitting things or hiding your bump - three or four months maybe?

    1. Hey there! Thank you for the inquiry, but I'm not actually pregnant:) I just like to dress comfy most of the time, but I guess I should be more careful with my posture in the future. lol

      Happy Holidays!

    2. I also thought you might have been alluding to a pregnancy with the "cries of a newborn" comment, so I scrolled down here to see if anyone had asked this :-) you certainly don't look it, though!

  7. I love your blog and am in awe of how far you and your family have come. I continuing wishing for all the best for each of you.
    As I am sitting here in my chemo chair at the hospital right now, I am hoping my 2017 is cancer free. Cancer free has me feeling really well and able to go out into the world for more travel and experiences with family. Here's hoping it stays this way for 2017! Happy New year Emily and family!
    Your friend,

  8. Thanks for your honesty and love that is so evident on this piece of the web. Keep fighting!

    My goals? Practice more contentment and joy in my daily life. Fall deeper in love with my Creator. Love on my family (my Grandma lives with us and I take care of her daily needs). Dig deeper into my midwifery studies. Go on more walks. Kiss my nephews more. :)


  9. I am so happy to read these latest posts of yours! As a long-time reader, I've felt that these latest posts have really reminded me why I absolutely love your blog.

    I thought of you when I saw that the new year would begin on a Sunday because I know you've written several times about your love for fresh starts. I can't wait to see what the new year has in store for this blog and for your family!

    Wishing you all the best,

  10. I love how interactive you are with everyone that reads your blog and gives support! That is truly wonderful! I wish you the best of 2017!

  11. I've been checking everyday to see if you had written another post. So when I saw that there was a new title, I was so happy!! I Thank you for being an inspiration to me. Your so kind and gentle with your words, that you help me to be thankful for this life God has given us. ❤️ Blessing to your family during this New Year.

  12. Hi Emily
    Please don't stop blogging. I love how you make sure to include us. I feel like part of your family / I have known you my Whole life. I check everyday to see if you write a new post. It takes me forever to comment but trust and believe I read them as soon as you post it. Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your life. Thank you for giving me strength when I don't have it, thank you for being an inspiration, thank you for allowing me to see your kids and your family. I love you guys. I feel so honored when you or Richard writes me back. 😌 I hope your doing ok. I hope Christmas was magical and Santa came. I hope with the new year y'all make wonderful memories and share pictures, hair, food, family, and more blogs this year😛 Happy New year my dearest friend. 😊

  13. Thanks Emily, I am so excited you are coming back and can not wait to hear all about your Christmas!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

  14. Hi Emily,
    I have been following your blog for about four years but never commented before. Just wanted to say a simple thank you for sharing little pieces from your life with us. Your family's journey has been so incredible, both sweet, beautiful and painful at the same time and it has touched me deeply to see you cope with all of it with such grace and optimism and at the same time be strong enough to share when you are feeling vulnerable.
    I wish you and your family all of the best in 2017 and I can't wait to read more posts from you, no matter what the subject is.
    Regards from Iceland.

  15. For just a second on IG I saw a video of my Sweetest Emily playing the piano 🎹 then it was gone 😢 and I couldn't find it again.
    Wishing you and your precious family a wonderful year and peace.
    Much love ❤️ Lana

  16. Happy New Year!! I love to read you're blog it's beautiful and you are such an inspiration!! Pls keep posting!!

  17. Emily,
    You truly are one amazing Momma and wife. Your story has touched so many people and you have so many who support you! Thousands in fact! Do not focus on the negative words of others, but instead focus on all the positive feedback from your "online" family. We support you and cheer you on! The work you do is such a service to us. You have shown us what it looks like to truly persevere through the hardest of times. At least that is what you have taught me.
    Focus on the here and now. Wherever you are, be all there. Know that you are never alone!
    Emily, this is YOUR YEAR!! What an exciting time as you now have Richard to walk with you on this journey of life! You've got this sister!

    Thank you for all that you do!

    Much love and support,
    Grace Thomas

  18. Emily,
    You truly are one amazing Momma and wife! Your story has touched me, as well as so many others! You must focus on all the positive comments and don't even glance at the negative! For you have thousands who are here to cheer you on! Go team go! The work you do is such a service to us all! You have taught us what it looks like to persevere through the hardest of times!
    I thank you for that.
    This is YOUR YEAR!! You now have Richard alongside you to help you and walk with you on this journey of life!!
    You've got this sister!

    Much love,
    Grace Fingerle

  19. Hey Emily!

    I just found your blog, and spend quite a few intense hours reading your story. whew!
    Your capacity to love people really struck me through your story.
    I'm so happy to read how you've embraced love, and seem to have learned that grieving and loving do not have to exclude each other.
    Because if not for love, what else are we human for?

    Wishing you and your family nothing but good thoughts!

    hugs, Marije

  20. Just heard about your blog today for the first time by listening to Jenna Kutcher's Goal Digger podcast. Your story is so moving and I truly feel and empathize with what you and your family have been through. Now I just want to sit here and binge read all of your blog posts. :) I look forward to following your blog from now on! Thank you and Happy New Year!

  21. It feels a little weird to comment on a complete stranger's life but I've been following your blog sporadically for a little over a year and I've been blown away. My dad passed away from cancer in November and some days I feel so bitter and self pitying. I read your words and I remember what's important in life and that everyone suffers and has something to overcome. I don't know you but you just seem like such a strong person who has such a magical outlook on life. And when I saw that you're younger than I am it made me feel really maybe I should do more with my life haha. Thank you for being such an inspiration and a bright light in this world ❤

    All the best for you!


  22. well I am excited too, because as of 12/30/16 I retired from 40+ years of full time employment as an RN. I too have been thinking of this new year as a blank canvas to fill for the first time with other than 5 day a week work! I will continue to read the blog and find new ways to be creative too

  23. Emily, thanks for continuing to share your story with us! You are so brave. I recently lost an immediate family member, and it has often been SO difficult, but especially recently, through the holidays. Usually I love the new year and reflecting on the old one but this time it was hard to summon the courage to keep moving forward. I have been so blessed, however, to know your story and others' and to know that God doesn't leave us all alone :) So thank you for being brave!

  24. Emily,
    I cannot tell you how much your life has blessed mine. All I wanted was an easy church hairstyle and God lead me to YOU. Words aren't enough to express the courage you have given me to fight my demons when it looked like giving up was my only option. You may never read this, but I just want to thank you so much for helping me stay alive.


  25. Emily,

    I've followed your blog for quite some time now and I always feel a roller coaster of emotions when I come to your corner of the web. I finally just got it wrapped around my head that we are the same age. You handle yourself with such grace and poise and you are truly an inspiration to me. I am currently going through a devastating divorce - I know this does not compare to the loss of Martin but I would imagine some of the feelings can be somewhat similar. I hope that I can be half the woman you are someday - you are rockin' this crazy thing they call life and I'm so grateful to have found your page. Keep doin' you beautiful!


  26. Hi Emily,
    I've been following your story on and off last year. In fact your blog is the only one that I keep coming back to. I just wanted to say that you are amazing and hope that 2017 will bring you many happy memories. Also your writing is beautiful! I wish you all the best!

  27. Emily, I think I have written and then deleted comments on various posts at least a dozen times over the years.. I have wanted to say something to comfort or express how you have touched me. I cried many times with you as my own heart ached for you at just the thought of losing my sweet husband.. or having to watch my own children struggle with such a monumental loss. I cannot begin to fathom the heart ache and the pain you have had to go through; your own and that of your babies. Your courage is astounding. I know you have had hard days and many more to come; but you keep going and you keep doing, all while being a light to others in their own pain. Your sweet testimony shows through your words and I am grateful for the strength it and you have provided me as I muddle through my own trials and pain. Thank you for sharing your pain and your joy; for sharing your faith and hope and most of all for sharing you. I feel like we are dear friends after following your story these years and even more so as your words have resonated and touched me. How wonderful that through the internet we can champion each other on, support and pray for people we may never meet. Such a wonderful feeling to know that so many are cheering you on! I hope that this year is a wonderful one; full of hope and joy! -Sara